Thursday, 18 October, 2018

Judge in Paul Manafort trial apologizes for rebuking prosecution

Paul Manafort's associate says 'hundreds' of emails prove former Trump campaign chief directed fraud Six bombshells from Rick Gates' testimony in the Paul Manafort trial
Jay Anderson | 10 August, 2018, 10:45

After only eight minutes with defense attorney Kevin Downing, a prosecutor asked questions created to restore his credibility in the eyes of the jury. Gates, a married father of four, had testified he used his firm's money to carry on the affair.

Gates' earlier testimony on Tuesday, meanwhile, centered on how Ukrainian businessmen paid Manafort for his consultancy work.

Magionos also walked jurors through charts breaking down the movement of Cyprus money to specific vendors and for use in a series of NY real estate transactions.

Gates appeared nervous on the witness stand at the court in Alexandria, Virginia, blinking frequently, his throat apparently dry as he spoke.

Ellis' comment came after a dramatic three days in which Gates, Manafort's protégé, implicated his former boss in a yearslong financial scheme while also enduring stinging attacks on his character and credibility.

Manafort has pleaded not guilty to charges in both cases. But Gates' testimony also revealed he was a deeply disreputable co-conspirator as Manafort's underling.

"In Cyprus, they were documented as loans".

Manafort closed his Bank of Cyprus accounts in 2013 and transferred the money directly to accounts at Hellenic Bank, Magionos said.

Ellis has repeatedly prodded prosecutors to move swiftly while seemingly giving Manafort's defense team more latitude.

The case against Manafort has little to do with either man's work for the Trump campaign and there's been no discussion during the trial about whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russian Federation - the central question Mueller's team has tried to answer. He said of Manafort: "I believe he understood his name would not be represented, nor would mine".

"You may put that aside", Ellis said. "I am here. I have accepted responsibility and I am trying to change". "So don't try my patience, either of you". After a back-and-forth discussion about how much income should be reclassified as a loan to aid Manafort, they settled on $900,000, she testified. He poked fun at himself Wednesday as he haggled with the attorneys for 20 minutes over the number and type of charts prosecutors could present during the testimony of the Federal Bureau of Investigation forensic accountant. So frequent were Gates's crimes that he could not answer definitively when asked if he had stolen money from the Trump inauguration committee, for which he served as deputy chairman.




She said even though she worked with Gates a lot, it was clear to her that Manafort "knew what was going on" in most instances.

Andres, the prosecutor, and the judge met in a sidebar conference with lawyers.

"It's possible", Gates, who was a Trump campaign aide, replied. When Downing resumed his questioning about what he called Gates' "secret life", Gates testified that he'd "made many mistakes over many years and I regret them".

But in reality, Manafort rented out the Howard Street loft on Airbnb for more than a year - as an "Amazing full floor loft in SoHo" - and still had a mortgage on the Brooklyn brownstone, James said.

Michael Zeldin, a former federal prosecutor, said that in Downing's remaining hour of cross-examination on Wednesday, he needs to keep painting Gates as an unreliable person who can not be trusted.

After questioning Gates for two hours on Tuesday, Downing finished in less than 10 minutes on Wednesday.

Manafort is charged with 18 counts of tax and banking crimes and has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Andres asked him: "Did you provide false information to the banks?'"

"Did he fire you?" Andres prompted Gates to point out where the money came from that he had stolen. But prosecutors dropped charges against Gates after the former business partner took a plea deal and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors.

Gates also said that when their political work in Ukraine dried up in 2015, Manafort had difficulty paying his bills and had no other clients at that time. He testified that Mr. Manafort directed him not to report the existence of offshore bank accounts that prosecutors allege were used to hide millions of.

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